Simeon 'Simy' Nwankwo: Nigeria striker completes Salernitana loan move

9 months ago 3211
Simeon 'Simy' Nwankwo'Simy' scored 66 goals in 159 appearances for Crotone

Nigeria international Simeon 'Simy' Nwankwo has boosted his hopes of appearing at the Africa Cup of Nations by joining Italian Serie A newcomers Salernitana on a season-long loan.

The 29-year-old scored 20 goals for Crotone last season to finish as the continent's top scorer in the league, but it was not enough to keep the club from relegation to the second tier.

"The desire to bring me here was special and I'm determined to repay the faith the club have put in me," said Simy.

The Nigerian scored 66 goals in 159 appearances for Crotone, whom he joined in 2016 from Portuguese club Gil Vicente.

"Everyone at the club would like to wish Simy well in the future," a Crotone statement read. external-link

With the likes of Napoli striker Victor Osimhen and Genk's Paul Onuachu ahead of him in the Super Eagles pecking order, his decision to stay in the top flight is expected to bolster his chances of featuring in Cameroon.

A shock call-up to the Nigeria 2018 World Cup squad, Simy made two substitute appearances in Russia.

He has five caps for the three time African champions.

His record 20 goals last season is a new record for a Nigerian striker in a single season in one of Europe's top leagues to overtake Yakubu's Aiyegbeni's 17 goals in the 2011-12 campaign for Blackburn Rovers in the Premier League.

By scoring 30 goals for Crotone, he erased the record (28 goals) set by compatriot Obafemi Martins - as the all-time leading Nigerian scorer in the Italian league for Inter Milan between 2002 and 2006.

In March, Simy became the third African player in Serie A history to find the net five games in a row after Liberia's George Weah in 1996 and Senegal's Keita Balde in 2017.

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